Apple has released a new version of iTunes, and it looks like they’re working on “crowdsourcing” DJing:
The iTunes DJ feature automatically picks songs from your entire library or from a specific playlist to create a continuous mix of music. Review upcoming songs to reorder or remove on the fly, or add songs to the playlist at any time.
Sounds innocent enough, until you add the updated Apple Remote application which lets iPhone users request the next song to play. It will get added to the queue to play in iTunes. The more people that request a song, the higher priority it gets in iTunes.
Yep – iTunes 8.1 + the iPhone Remote app democratizes DJing.
On one hand, this sounds like a great idea. The crowd gets to hear the songs it wants to hear.
On the other hand, it sounds like a recipe for a random, greatest hits of yesterday playlist.
Apple already has a “Genius” feature in iPhone that attempts to predict new music that you might like, based on the musical characteristics of the music that you like.
It’s not too much of a stretch to imagine a future iTunes that beatmixes tracks together based on “crowdsourced” preferences, intelligently groups tracks by categories and BPM, and uses predictive collaborative filtering to throw in new tracks that a crowd is likely to like.
In other words – Apple’s not that far off from crowdsourcing DJing.
Sound far-fetched? Let me know what you think of “crowdsourced” DJing with iTunes and iPhones!